By Tammy Sons
The Mimosa Tree also known as the “Silk Tree” or “Persian Silk Tree” because of the shimmering and eye-catching flowers. They are most frequently planted near houses because they exert a pull on hummingbirds, birds and butterflies. They can grow anywhere from thirty to forty feet. They can become accustomed to any type of soil and can be planted in full sunlight of partial shade. They are tolerant to drought conditions. They grow odorous hot pink flowers that bloom in clusters and are about 1 ½ inches long. The flowers are soft, feathery and scented, almost smelling like nutmeg. The tree can grow either as single-stem or multi-trunk. The trunk is a gray color. The flowers appear in May through July. The plant requires soil that is high in acidity; the ideal pH is between 4.6 and 5. The Mimosa tree gives off a tropical feel. The leaves are bipinnate which means they have leaflets that are subdivided in a pinnate arrangement. At night the leaves go to “sleep,” folding in and nodding toward the ground. The flowers bloom the best when the summers are long and dry. They have a short life span that last anywhere from ten to twenty years. The Mimosa tree reproduces very quickly. It can withstand any type of temperature. The tree is native to Asia and its native range is from Iran to China. It has been established from Virginia to Louisiana and is very common in areas of California. It grows the best in the coastal areas.